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Doctors and patients at the Cincinnati Children's Hospital are burdening the nationwide lack of cancer drugs



Grayson Sharpe leaned on his father's shoulder for a good reason on Friday afternoon. The 16-year-old fought hard for leukemia and strives to regain his strength. "I feel great," Sharpe said. Sharpe, who learned to play the ukulele at Cincinnati Children's Hospital for half a year, credits a drug he knows little about, which he calls Vincristine, and helps him get away with it. "I heard the name (the drug) I saw the liquid pumped into me and that was it," said Sharpe A lot of this chemococktail, if you will, "said his father, Aaaron Sharpe. Recently, Aaron Sharpe learned that the pharmaceutical company Teva had stopped producing vincristine in the US, leaving another drug maker, Pfizer, to deal with the backlog, which led to production problems and a nationwide shortage. "I knew people with whom Vincristine was really the only one who worked for her, "said Sharpe In a statement, the director of oncology at Cincinnati Children's Hospital called the deficiency" extremely disturbing. "But Dr. John Perentesis said the children's hospital was" strategic and we are confident that the outcome of a child will not be affected. "In short, there is no incentive for pharmaceutical companies to to produce such drugs. "Grayson Sharpe and his father find that hard to understand." I think in America the medical system is just so broken, "Grayson Sharpe said," I'm all for capitalism. It's a great thing, but they make a business decision they can not afford to continue producing something that saves lives. This is a concern, "said Aaron Sharpe Dykes, who contacted a Teva spokesman on Thursday and did not receive a response." Until Friday, the company made the following statement on its website: "Teva takes the meaning of Vincristine very seriously When Teva decided To cease the production of vincristine in the US, the company supplied only 3% of the market. The remaining 97% came from the manufacturer of the branded product. Because of the lack of demand for the Teva product at the time, and in order for us to tailor our limited resources to produce other life-saving products needed on the market, Teva has decided to discontinue Vincristine and informed the FDA of its decision in March 201

9. Based on available data, there was no indication of a potential shortage as the company leaves the market and availability of Teva products has not contributed to the shortage seen today. We do not take the disposal of products lightly and always look at the need carefully and as thoroughly as possible (although we are generally not familiar with the challenges that other manufacturers might face in the delivery). We are currently exploring all options to contribute to the solution, having realized that the branded product is in short supply. Perentesis continued, "Fixing the shortage must be our top priority. First, I believe that we need a professional monitoring system for federal drug tracking to anticipate low-cost medicines that are at risk of being deficient, for example those with only one or two manufacturers. Second, incentives or other measures are needed to ensure that companies continue to produce low cost but critical medicines such as vincristine. The further healing of children with cancer is at risk and we need to take action. "

Grayson Sharpe leaned on his father's shoulder on Friday afternoon for a good reason. The 16-year-old fought hard for leukemia and strives to regain his strength.

"I feel great," Sharpe said.

Sharpe learned to play ukulele at the Children's Hospital of Cincinnati for half a year, earning a drug he still knows little about, Vincristine.

"I heard the name (the drug) I saw the liquid pumped into me and that's about it," Sharpe said.

"Vincristine was a big part of this chemococktail, if you like," said his dad, Aaaron Sharpe.

Aaron Sharpe learned recently that pharmaceutical company Teva discontinued vincristine production in the US

Another drug company, Pfizer, had to catch up, leading to production problems and a nationwide bottleneck.

"I knew people (for those) where Vincristin was really the only one they worked on," Sharpe said.

In a statement, the director of oncology at Cincinnati Children's Hospital called the deficiency "extremely disturbing." But Dr. John Perentesis said that Children's Hospital "has played a strategic role in acquiring medicines and we are confident that the outcome of a child will not be affected." In short, there is no incentive for pharmaceutical companies to produce such medicines.

This is something that Grayson Sharpe and his father find hard to understand.

"I think in America, the medical system is just so broken," Grayson Sharpe said.

"I'm all for capitalism. It's a great thing, but they make a business decision that they can not afford to continue producing something that saves lives. That's a cause for concern, "said Aaron Sharpe. Todd Dykes, Investigator of WLWT News 5, contacted a Teva spokesman on Thursday and received no response.

By Friday, the company released the following statement on its Website:

Teva takes the meaning of vincristine very seriously, we also understand the passion and pain that parents and patients can feel, but it is important to appreciate the facts.

"When Teva decided to manufacture from Vincristin in the US, the company supplied only 3% of the market. The remaining 97% came from the manufacturer of the branded product. Because of the lack of demand for the Teva product at the time and to allow us to re-adapt our limited resources to produce other life-saving products needed in the marketplace, Teva vincristine decided to discontinue and the FDA about its decision in March 2019 to inform. Based on the available data, there was no indication of the possibility of a shortage when the company left the market, and the availability of Teva products did not contribute to the existing shortage. We do not take the disposal of products lightly and always scrutinize the need carefully as thoroughly as possible (although we are usually unfamiliar with the supply challenges of other manufacturers) s may have). We are exploring every opportunity to contribute to the solution, having realized that the branded product is in short supply. "

Perentesis continued," Fixing the shortage must be a top priority among policymakers. First, I believe that we need a professional monitoring system for federal drug tracking to anticipate low-cost medicines that are at risk of being deficient, for example those with only one or two manufacturers. Second, incentives or other measures are needed to ensure that companies continue to produce low cost but critical medicines such as vincristine. The further cure of children with cancer is at risk, and we must take action. "


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